Letters to the Editor

Canadian justice system in crisis

To the Editor,

Re: Justice needs major overhaul, Opinion, Feb. 9.

When I first moved to Nanaimo I witnessed something strange and peculiar.

Outside of witty bedtime rhymes and the occasional tale, I had never seen or heard of bedbugs before.

As I watched my neighbours panic over this frustrating dilemma they were forced to endure, I did not understand why they did not simply find a solution.

Instead, they gossiped on the problem affecting others and simply gossiped about everyone else’s problem and hid their own. There were simple solutions to this issue that was rapidly growing out of control.

We face a similar problem in our judicial system.

Canada is experiencing overcrowded prisons, court backlogs, insufficient staffing in all areas of the criminal justice system and the expensive short-term solutions to these problems. And that just scrapes the surface of this ever growing disaster.

In Michel Foucault’s book Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison, he states that, “we are aware of all the inconveniences of prison, and that it is dangerous when not useless. And yet we cannot see how to replace it. It is this detestable solution that one cannot see without.”

I can see from Thursday’s News Bulletin that our current situation regarding the Canadian judicial system is of great importance.

There was not one, but four articles regarding the backlog in our court system and again, the short-term solution provided.

In essence, Canada is spraying our ‘bedbug problem’ with a few judges here, and a few prisons there, but it is only costing Canadian citizens obscene amounts money for a problem that will surely return.

Brandon P. Blond

Nanaimo

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